Ayyappa Swamy Mala-Ayyappa Swamy Deeksha
“Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa“. Ayyappa Swamy is a Hindu deity who resides in Sabari Hills (Sabarimala) which is located in the hills of Pathanamthitta in Kerala. Ayyappa is worshiped by millions of devotees. He is son of Harihara, fused with both Shiva and Vishnu. He is seen in a yogic posture, wearing a jewel around his neck, hence also called as Manikanta, which literally means “person with gem around the neck”.
A visit to Sabarimala brings to the devotees contentment, spiritual upliftment, prosperity and fulfillment of devotees desires and wishes. The months of Karthika Masam, Dhanur Maasam (15 Nov – 15 Jan) are most auspicious for Sabarimala pilgrimage.
Makara Jyothi is a star which is worshiped by pilgrims in huge numbers at Sabarimala Temple in Kerala on Makara Sankranti on 14 January every year. However many devout Hindus claim that Makara Jyothi is the celestial lighting which takes place on Makara Sankranthi day and they believe that Lord Ayyappan asserts himself as Makara Jyothi to bless his devotees.
About Ayyappa Swamy Mala Deeksha
Ayyappa Deeksha is a religious observation done as an offering to Lord Ayyappa following the rules & regulations of utmost celibacy (as practiced by Brahmacharis in good olden days). Deeksha should be observed for 41 days.
Who Can Take Ayyappa Swamy Mala Deeksha?
Males: Any one can take ayyappa swamy mala deeksha.
Females: Below age 10 and above 50 can observe ayyappa swamy deeksha.
When To Take Ayyappa Swamy Mala Deeksha?
It is usually observed during the Mandalam (which usually falls between Nov 2nd week and Sankranthi). Mandalam starts on first day of Kartika Masam (as per Kerala Calendar)
Where And How To Take Ayyappa Swamy Mala Dharana?
Mala Dharana can be done in any temple. It is usually done by Guruswami (who had been to Sabrimala 18 times) at the temple. Suppose if the devotee has no Guru, he has to wear it in a temple, after placing the mala at the feet of the Lord, perform archana through the priest offering him Dakshina, and considering the Lord Himself as Guru and then wear the mala. The Mala can be of either Rudraksham or Tulasi. Deeksha will be ended after returning home from Sabarimala. Mala should not be removed in Pamba or Sannidham.
Things To Remember/Do When You Are In Ayyappa Swamy Mala Deeksha-Ayyappa Swamy Deeksha Niyamalu
1) Take bath in early morning and evening with cold water. (Clarify usage of Soap and Shampoo from your guru Swamy).
2) Visit temple daily.
3) Do the pooja twice a day, morning (before sun rise) and evening (after sunset).
4) Do your regular daily pooja followed by Ashotharam (108 namas) to Ganesh, Subramanyam, Durga & Ayyappan.
5) Chant Hairivarasanam only after evening Pooja.
6) No need for cooked Prasadam every day. Fruits as Naivedyam for Ayyappan are OK.
7) Take bath as soon you come home in the evening from work.
8) The Mala worn with the blessing of Guru should not be removed even during bathing.
9) Wear only Black Dress.
10) Dont sleep in the Afternoon.
11) You should never take the mala out.
12) Use fresh clothes every day. So have two pairs of black dress and wash them every day.
13) No Breakfast.
14) Lunch: Should take fresh cooked food before noon. No left overs from previous day.
15) Dinner: Should take light food like, upma, idli etc.
16) No onion,garlic, egg or meat products.
17) Outside food should be completely avoided.
18) If anyone calls you for Annadanam you should not refuse the invitation. Make sure they should have prepared the meal after taking bath etc.
19) When you or your spouse is preparing meal, make sure you clean the stove before cooking.
20) Avoid the enemies like Lust, Anger, Greed and Seductive Attraction. (kama, krodha, moha, lobha…)
21) Sleep on ground without pillow and bed.
22) NO Entertainment. (Means no partying, no watching TV, listening to film music etc, no playing games)
23) Do not hurt others feelings either by word or action, control your anger.
24) Speak truth and talk less.
25) Call all women (including wife) as ‘Matha’ and men as ‘Swamy’
26) Bramhacharyam: Should not even touch your spouse.
27) During monthly cycle for women, husband taking Deeksha is not supposed to see the wife at all. (Some say, it is not needed, but lot of people try to follow this rule too). If it is not possible in the house/apartment you are living, that is OK. But we might see women who are in their monthly cycles outside in shops or may shake hands with them (at work or shop). That is the reason it is recommended to take bath immediately you reach home from outside)
28) No Smoking, Drinking, gambling, chewing of pan.
29) No footwear.
30) Not supposed to shave your beard, comb your hair and hair cuttings.
31) Try to attend as many as bhajans in your deeksha time.
32) Try to have tulasi leaf with you to be away from evil thoughts.
33) All round the work time, keep your mind only focused on the Lord. Even the work you do is being instrumented by the Lord. Dedicate the same to the Lord. Perhaps, Bhagavad Gita too shares a similar thought.
34) As far as possible, eating and dining out can be avoided. In the worst inevitable case, follow strict vegetarianism.
35) Ensure that you don’t hurt anybody either verbally or by action.
36) When you meet a peer, who is in the 48-day observation, treat him on par Lord Ayyappa. Tell him Sharanam and offer pranams to him.
37) There is no age, degree or other demarcatory restrictions in this whatsoever.
38) Your Guruswamy is on par Ayyappa. Service to your Guru is service to the Lord Himself.
39) Before the date of commencement of Yatra, within your capacity, if possible, do a small Pooja and do a small scale ANNADANAM to poor and needy people.
40) Do not tease anybody or any living things
41) Do not earn illegal money.
42) Do not scold any Ayyappa even they are your disciple.
43) Do not point out other’s mistakes
44) Do not take part in Court Cases and stand surety for anybody during this period.
45) Do not take part in Dramas or in Cinemas in which you have to act in undesirable scenes and avoid seeing such Cinemas.
46) Either knowingly or unknowingly, do not commit sins.
47) After having Dharsanam and after reaching home only remove the Malas. On reaching home, breaking coconut at entrance, keep the Prasadam at your Pooja place at home, take bath, do Harathi for the Prasadam with Naivedyam, distribute the Prasadam for the entire family of yours and then remove the Mala yourself, duly chanting Saranam or chanting the Manthras for the removal of Mala, if you know it. Removing the Mala en-route is not advisable.
48) You have to remove mala by your Guruswamy or by any temple priest. However, some books say that the Mala should be removed by your Gurusamy at the same place where you put your Mala on.
49) Avoid attending marriages, new born ceremonies, death etc. In the unforeseen circumstance of having to encounter a birth or death in the near family relationship, surrender the mala to Lord Ayyappa photo. Wait for that year. You are eligible for the yatra from the next year.
Kanni Swamies Assignment:
All Kanni Swamies irrespective of age will have to go around Pampa and collect ashes from 108 stoves of Ayyappas who are cooking the food. Please do not collect from the shops. It is believed that our Lord Ayyappan will be a guest among the devotees at all the places food is prepared by the Swamies. After the ashes are collected it has to be sieved clean and handed to the Guruswamy.
With inputs from high professionals hope the above information would help you a great way in getting up with the Spiritual observation for Lord Ayyappa to get His complete blessings. “Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa “.
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